Diving duo wins gold

Coach Ron Raper, senior Henry Philpott, freshman Cai Flowers and Diving Coach Gamal Jones celebrate the diving teams first place finish.

Claudinette Verela

Coach Ron Raper, senior Henry Philpott, freshman Cai Flowers and Diving Coach Gamal Jones celebrate the diving team’s first place finish.

Fareen Dhuka, Staff Writer

While Maverick Diving consists only of senior Henry Philpott and freshman Cai Flowers, their resilience and determination allowed both to receive gold medals at their Dec. 8 meet.

At the Alief-Ness Natatorium, Flowers placed first in the 11 dives she competed in, while Philpott won in his division. This time, they both ranked first at the same meet, but these gold medals were not their first individual wins.

Flowers was the youngest diver of the six high schools competing, but she has been diving with the Cougar Diving Club since she was nine. The several club meets have prepared her well for school diving competitions: Flowers broke the school record, originally set by Laura Donnelly in 2003, with 313.35 points.

“It feels great to beat the diving record as a freshman,” Flowers said. “It wasn’t something I expected this early on.”

Philpott also broke his own SPC record at the December meet. He surpassed his previous score of 309 with a final score of 332 points.

“It was really awesome because there were a lot of great divers there, and I didn’t think I had a chance,” Philpott said. “It’s amazing — we only have two divers at St. John’s, and we both ended up taking first place.”

With his new record, Philpott won gold with a small margin that he passed in the final dive.

“Receiving two gold medals at the last meet of 2017 is a great way to start the new year, and it represents the school well,” Flowers said.

Flowers and the swim team drove four hours to a meet on Jan. 5 and 6 in Lewisville, Texas. She placed 14th out of 26 girls in the diving competition.

“I felt unprepared because I only had one practice over the break before the meet,” Flowers said. “I’m definitely going to practice a lot more now that school has started, which will let me improve my results and hopefully overall placing in future meets.”

With the new motivation of the diving team, Philpott looks forward to competing at the SPC championships in February.

“Now, we’re going to really be able to help out the swimming team at SPC and hopefully get some championship trophies,” Philpott said.